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Kickhunter: All In

You have to love an album that starts off with cow bell! That sound instantly tells you that rock and roll is about to follow, the brand of rock and roll that is fuel for acts of depravity which usually start off with the statement "Hold my beer and watch this"! Destined to be on the juke box of every biker bar there is, Kickhunter takes a no holes barred approach as they prove Germany can bring you a healthy dose of Southern Boogie/Metal as much as the Confederate States over here in the U.S.A. They might not reside in the land of Molly Hatchet, Lynyrd Skynyrd or Blackfoot but their hearts are deep in Dixie.

Bassist Markus Grosskopf from Helloween has assembled quite a cast of characters to pull off this infectious disc that may help to sate you until the next Allman Brothers or Georgia Satellites disc. JC Wesenberg is the vocals behind this menagerie that includes the dynamic Hammond Organ of Ansas Strehlow and the occasional piano mastery of Pascal Kravetz. Add to that a pair of female singers and the duel guitars of Stefan Aurel and Rollie Feldman and you have the makings of a rock and roll party that will definitely need chicken wire strung in front of the stage.

To be fair, the band does give you a few variations on the theme. Kickhunter leans almost as far to the 80's style heavy metal that came from their part of the globe as they do when it comes to music from our neck of the woods. Their remake of Victory's "Checks In The Mail" with Melanie Black on vocals is a very good take on the European classic metal sound with a unique twist to say the least. The other female vocalist Ela adds a slightly different sound to the Blondie classic "Call Me". Ela also adds lead vocals to the ballad "Deep In My Heart" which lends itself as much to southern gospel as it does to rock and roll.

They also take a left turn when that Hammond organ does a Phantom of the Opera intro to the very slick and almost too sweet "Another Tear". It is a very good song but sounds like a little bit like something that might have come out of Good Charlotte or someone similar.

The other ballad on here "Feels Like Home" is pure southern rock that would be at home on any Skynyrd or even the new Kid Rock disc. Complete with the haunting female chorus in the background and the tinkling piano work this is old school country rock that will become an old friend real quick. There is nothing that can compare with the Hammond for this type of music and these guys use it to perfection. Try and not play this song more than once. It will not happen.

The 57 second title track "All In" is a honky tonk intro that leads to the rip it up boogie of "Shy Shy Shy". Instantly familiar this is one of those songs that you will swear you heard before and you have in style for sure but it still grows on you and your foot will start tapping, the neck will start bobbing and you will be whispering the chorus about the second time through it. This is good time boogie that is timeless and will always have a place in my collection.

With all that is going on in this disc, the most interesting part to me is the moody closer called "Ocean" which is a cross of The Beatles and Pink Floyd that makes one of the coolest ends to an album since Abbey Road. Kickhunter seems to know that there are certain types of music that are timeless and they make sure to hit on as many of them as possible. This whole disc is like an old friend the minute you listen to it but one that has been away for a very long time. When you finally get back together it is as if you have never been separated. This band makes me long for the days when music could become a part of you. They do their best and I have enjoyed the trip they take us on many times already. I am sure that there is many more to come.

Track listing:

1. Mine All Mine
2. Revolution
3. Another Tear
4. Feels Like Home
5. All In
6. Shy Shy Shy
7. Checks In The Mail
8. Boogie Town
9. Deep In My Heart
10. Call Me
11. Ocean

Added: December 23rd 2010
Reviewer: Scott Ward
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 1918
Language: english

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